PORTLAND Town A suffered a narrow 3-2 loss at the hands of a youthful Alderholt Reserves in Dorset League Division Four.

With new management at the helm, Town started off the brightest but, within 15 minutes, Alderholt’s youngsters took the lead.

Town were grappling with a new style of play and found it hard to find their feet in the opening exchanges. However, the islanders slowly settled in with the back pairing of Luke Adkins and Colin Judge keeping the two strikers at bay.

With a bit of bad fortune, Town’s stand-in keeper Rich Johnson cleared the ball only to hit the onrushing forward and bounce kindly for an easy tap-in.

Town made a few changes with veteran Paul Cole stepping up and causing the Alderholt defence problems.

Five minutes before half-time, Jamie West, with some Lionel Messi-style tricks, nutmegged a defender and smashed an outstanding volley into the top corner from 30 yards.

Town’s Luke Moorley ran the show in the middle of the park during the second half and a beautiful weighted pass from man of the match set Cole up for a one-on-one.

After rounding the outstretched keeper, Cole was bought down in the box before dusting himself down and banging the penalty in to the top corner.

Portland were now on top and should have taken the three points but missed several chances in the closing minutes.

But Alderholt hit back when a long ball over the top found their striker who rounded keeper Johnson to score.

Disaster struck from a quick break as Alderholt won a penalty after a fine save from Johnson that bobbled to the striker who blasted the ball goalwards.

Captain Joe Ryder was adjudged to have used his arm, rather than shoulder, to keep the shot out and Alderholt converted the penalty.